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Ex-team boss Gian Carlo Minardi hits out at F1's big teams

Former Formula 1 team boss Gian Carlo Minardi has accused the sport's bigger outfits of being short sighted in blocking Marussia's bid to return to the grid in 2015

Marussia could have been given the green light to return to F1 at the Australian Grand Prix if approval had been given for it to be allowed to run a 2014 car.

However, a request to change the rules failed to receive the unanimous support required when Force India blocked it.

Marussia insists F1 return is viable

That decision has infuriated former Minardi boss Gian Carlo Minardi, who says that larger teams should support smaller outfits because it prevents them being exposed to running at the back of the field.

"[It was] an absurd and unsportsmanlike behaviour," said Minardi about the Marussia rejection.

"If you get rid of the two Cinderellas - Marussia and Caterham - then it means shortening the grid.

"Consequently the last row will be occupied by teams with far greater budgets and ambitions - with commercial consequences."

Minardi added that the current situation takes him back the mid-1990s when he fought hard to secure the future of small teams against the might of manufacturers.

"This situation reminds me of the '96-'97 seasons, when I defended very strongly the importance of the small teams," he said.

"I argued that without teams participating with great passion but limited means - hoping, who knows, to find the right funds for the future - on the last row there would inevitably be big manufacturers.

"It is a situation that has repeatedly occurred in the 2000s.

"The manufacturers do not want to wait years to grow and achieve positive results; they have commercial and image objectives in the short terms.

"I hope that it [the Marussia vote] is not the final decision and that there is room for reason."

WHO WOULD BE AT THE BACK

Occasionally Marussia and Caterham would punch above their weight and get one of their cars through to Q2, but more often than not their cars filled up the back of the grid.

As Minardi explains, without them it will now be other teams filling up the bottom slots on the qualifying timesheets.

Here is how the back of the grid would have looked in 2014 if Marussia and Caterham were not there, although on some occasions cars had to start from the pit lane.

There were six races when the bottom rankings were unchanged - two times because Caterham and Marussia were absent.

AUSTRALIA Pastor Maldonado (Lotus), Romain Grosjean (Lotus)*
MALAYSIA Adrian Sutil (Sauber), Valtteri Bottas (Williams)
BAHRAIN Pastor Maldonado (Lotus), Adrian Sutil (Sauber)
CHINA Esteban Gutierrez (Sauber), Pastor Maldonado (Lotus)
SPAIN Jean-Eric Vergne (Toro Rosso), Pastor Maldonado (Lotus)*
MONACO Esteban Gutierrez (Sauber), Adrian Sutil (Sauber)
CANADA Pastor Maldonado (Lotus), Esteban Gutierrez (Sauber)
AUSTRIA Esteban Gutierrez (Sauber), Romain Grosjean (Lotus)
BRITAIN Esteban Gutierrez (Sauber), Pastor Maldonado (Lotus)
GERMANY Pastor Maldonado (Lotus), Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
HUNGARY Kevin Magnussen (McLaren), Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)*
BELGIUM Nico Hulkenberg (Force India), Esteban Gutierrez (Sauber)
ITALY Romain Grosjean (Lotus), Daniil Kvyat (Toro Rosso)
SINGAPORE Adrian Sutil (Sauber), Pastor Maldonado (Lotus)
JAPAN Jean-Eric Vergne (Toro Rosso), Pastor Maldonado (Lotus)
RUSSIA Felipe Massa (Williams), Pastor Maldonado (Lotus)
USA Daniil Kvyat (Toro Rosso), Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull) *
BRAZIL Daniil Kvyat (Toro Rosso), Sergio Perez (Force India) *
ABU DHABI Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull), Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull) *
* Bottom two positions unchanged

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